MUSICIANS

When the sadness
Coloured the smile
Of the musician’s sunshine
I saw that his joy
Had just got deeper
And the unshed tears
Longing in his eyes
Were less bitter
Than they were bittersweet
To my ears
Music to my heart
Water to my soul – his sorrow
Became the joy of my spirit flame.
That was when I saw him smile
That broke my heart.

– CHE CHIDI CHUKWUMERIJE.

PRISONERS OF LAW, CITIZENS OF LOVE

Sunday morning
The homeless beggar throws his plastic sheet off his destitute form
Steps out for a moment from under his bridge
Takes a dry bath in the warm sun’s rays

The off-duty policeman
Who tomorrow on duty will evict him again from under the bridge
Walks past him on his way to worship
Throws him a kind smile and a coin into his bowl.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.

URBAN HAPPY

Broken bristles of bile
And a sundown smile
Was all she needed to discover
My words are quicksand
Too late. Too late. Too late. Too late.

Rough teeth, gated heart
Addicted to the back bite
All these people talking about heaven
Lying to themselves
And taking comfort in your confused belief.

But love will save me
Because I’m not a believer
That inner river bleeds me drunk
The city’s my village
What’s the big difference? Propaganda.

– che chidi chukwumerije.

ACTING

If you keep it free and open
It will find a friend
It will make a headway into
Yet another start

If you act like you were rhyming
Though you’re far from it
Those who dance along will wander
Why no-one else hears

The masterpiece within the picture,
Why nobody feels
The music in the melody
The magic in the air.

—————
che chidi chukwumerije
—————

LAGOON

Lagoon Lagos fishing

A canoe is floating on a Lagos lagoon
A young lad in a face cap
Holds in his fist a fishing net

He looks briefly over at me
Looks away again
We met and parted in that look

The bus drove off
A brief moment of contact
I could almost swear

We understood each other completely
Without words
Though we think us dead,

We live.
Though we think we different
We more similar than we think.

– che chidi chukwumerije.

BEING GENUINE

A foolish student
Will one day become a wise teacher
An unyielding sinner
Will one day become a moving preacher

The gap that yawns in you today
Will be filled by the pain of growth
Perfection and Imperfection may look like opposites
But when they arise in you, embrace them both

Because you don’t know which is which
Who is really poor and who is really rich.

– che chidi chukwumerije.

THE ESSENCE

In seeking Contact with people
Seek that within them
Which is the core of their
Human essence.

There is a moment
Like an electric shock,
When humanity meets humanity
Your cores touch
And so do always your chores –

A kickstart into the Quick
Hearts run like rivers
Seeking the sea. Let it be.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.